IIAR Webinar Series Addresses Safe Work Practices

The International Institute of Ammonia Refrigeration has researched and gathered information from several members over the past year to develop a series of seven “Permit to Work: Safe Work Practices” webinars to help members of the industry stay safe and remain OSHA compliant.

The General Duty Clauses from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and Environmental Protection Administration each require that employers provide employment and a place of work which are free from recognized hazards. Before an employer permits work to occur, they need to rely on their established procedures and other safe work practices.

Each of the seven webinar was developed to capture the needed content for a particular procedure or practice. The webinars were about one hour long, and participants in the live presentations were able to ask questions during Q&A sessions at the end of each webinar and were given the opportunity to earn a Professional Development Hour (PDH) or a Continuing Education Unit (CEU) to be applied for sustaining certification.

Following are brief overviews of each webinar, along with the date it originally debuted. All of these webinars are available to members on IIAR’s website.


This webinar covered work involving any system that can open to the atmosphere which might be hazardous – meaning any system involving extreme temperatures, systems under extremely high or extremely low pressures, or a system that uses toxic, combustible or corrosive materials. This webinar will help viewers develop comprehensive procedures to protect employees from an injury that may be caused by the unexpended release of materials, or exposure to the extreme environments contained therein.
Presented Sept. 26 , 2018


For the purposes of this webinar, a confined space is considered to be one large enough that an employee can enter to perform assigned work but that has limited or restricted means for entry and exit and is not designed for continuous occupancy. Obviously, these spaces present dangers that regular work areas would not, so it’s important to have comprehensive guidelines for how and when an employee can and should enter one of these areas.
Presented Jan.


This webinar covers work in any place where, if precautions are not taken, a person could become injured from a fall. The work could be above ground or floor level where a person could fall from an edge, through an opening, or through a fragile surface. It also includes work at ground or floor level where a person could fall into an opening in the floor or a hole in the ground from excavation or erosion. The mechanics of a slip and fall accident and the four types of falls – “Trip and Fall,” “Stump and Fall,” “Step and Fall” and “Slip and Fall” were each covered during the webinar.
Presented March 27


This webinar covered best practices for work that compacts or disturbs the ground. Compacting, excavating, digging and pile driving were each reviewed, but as a rule of thumb, disturbing the ground without knowing what lies beneath result in damage to components, costly repairs, injuries and even death. The “811 Call Center” for notifying appropriate utility companies where applicable, and the color code for marking buried utility lines, were covered in the webinar.
Presented May 22nd


This webinar discussed work involving electric welding, gas welding, cutting, brazing and other flame- or spark-producing operations. Fire protection and fire prevention were classified as being so important, due to unfortunate historical events, that Hot Work Permits, as a Safe Work Practice, actually became one of the elements for both Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s Process Safety Management Standard and the Environmental Protection Agency’s Risk Management Plan Rule. IIAR also has a recorded webinar “Hot Work Permits for Ammonia Refrigeration Systems” that members can review.
Presented July 17th


This webinar will address the practices and procedures necessary to disable machinery or equipment, thereby preventing the release of hazardous energy while employees perform servicing and maintenance activities. Employees servicing or maintaining machines or equipment may be exposed to serious physical harm or death if hazardous energy is not properly controlled or eliminated. Affixing appropriate lockout or tagout devices to energy-isolating devices and by deenergizing machines and equipment is how this is generally done.
Coming soon.


This webinar will cover how to keep workers safe around electrically energized equipment. Arc flashes are unwanted energy releases in the form of plasma in which the air is the conductor. At worst, these arcs can cause massive explosions, devastating everything in their paths and creating deadly shrapnel. This webinar will discuss compliance with OSHA standards including: Developing a safety program with defined responsibilities, calculating the degree of an Arc Flash hazard, appropriate personal protective equipment for workers and how to train employees on the hazards of arc flashes.
Coming soon

IIAR is committed to providing awareness and education to address safety refrigeration industry across the board. The association welcomes input from members and industry practicing experts for the development or improvement of previously presented materials that would benefit the refrigeration industry.

If you believe any additional “Safe Work Practice” should be explored, please contact Tony Lundell at the IIAR Headquarters. His email is tony_lundell@iiar.org.